Disciples News Service

Tennyson Center CEO

POSITION GUIDE – Final Draft August 3, 2016

POSITION:  Chief Executive Officer

ORGANIZATION: Tennyson Center for Children

LOCATION:  Denver, Colorado

REPORTS TO:   Board of Directors


 Changing Lives and Giving Hope to Children and Families


Tennyson Center works with children, youth, and their families to overcome a variety of life crises, including abuse and neglect. Tennyson Center is a community of people dedicated to serving children and youth and strengthening families. As professionals and concerned citizens we strive to provide competent and caring treatment, education, and  advocacy services that are community-based, family-focused, and child-centered.

The agency provides services to children and families regardless of religion, creed, age, race, color, gender, national origin, sexual orientation, gender expression, disability status, or military status.

The Tennyson Center for Children

In 1904, having no children of their own, but a deep religious faith, John and Mary Warren founded Colorado Christian Home as an orphanage in Loveland, Colo. The campus may have changed since those early days, but that legacy of caring lives on today in the culture and values at Tennyson Center for Children (Tennyson). Today Tennyson is one of the Rocky Mountain region’s leading treatment centers for abused, neglected and at- risk youth. The organization is recognized for not only the healing and protection of children from abuse and neglect, but also in the efforts to help children with mental health and  developmental issues.

Tennyson prov ides residential and therapeutic services, as well as a K-12 school, to children ages five to 18. The children are survivors of severe abuse or neglect, or have significant mental health or developmental issues. This organization is often seen as a last resort for children who have nowhere else to go.

Tennyson is a community of dedicated people who believe that with the proper support, children and families possess the capacity to heal. The  organization’s programs and services help children and families identify what strengths they possess and aid them in leveraging these skills and resources to overcome obstacles, achieve spiritual wholeness and live empowered lives.

Tennyson services embrace the five values of trauma informed care: safety, choice, collaboration, empowerment, and trustworthiness. The organization prov ides effective and caring treatment, education and advocacy services that are community-based, family-focused and child-centered. In the last year, 499 children and 1,562 family members  were served in three programs:

  • Residential Treatment: providing 24-hour care for children who cannot function in a home environment
  • Day Treatment: providing an intensive treatment and education program for children who are able to live at home
  • Community-Based Services: providing intensive therapy in the child’s home and community.

For more information regarding Tennyson Center for Children please visit: www.tennysoncenter.org.

The Opportunity

Tennyson’s CEO w ill shape, guide and execute the organization’s vision for the future. This is an opportunity to build on a 100 plus year history of service, while accelerating the agency’s impact in the 21st century. The Board seeks a leader who w ill partner with them in thinking boldly, creatively and strategically about this organization’s future. The direction for the future includes these five priorities:

  • Heal: The Tennyson’s Board, staff and volunteers are committed to providing the most innovative, effective, comprehensive and caring treatment, and education services to the children and families that need them
  • Cultivate: Sets the standard for an inclusive fund development program that ensures ongoing cultivation of relationships with Tennyson’s current and future donors, stakeholders and assures diversity of funding sources to provide the resources necessary to accelerate progress on the mission and achieve the desired organizational outcomes.
  • Advocate: Tennyson is the thought leader in its sector and the voice for abused and neglected children. The organization monitors and seeks to positively impact the current environment of law s and policies related to child abuse and neglect,at both the federal and state levels through ongoing engagement w ith policy development.
  • Build: Builds a robust organizational culture that attracts and retains high quality; anticipates future organizational needs by building Board, volunteer and staff capacity and expertise.
  • Sustain: Creates and continuously evolves an adaptable business model that meets Tennyson’s ambitions and anticipates the communities’ evolving needs and Fosters financial sustainability by strategically designing and building new business models that further diversify and grow organizational income, while capitalizing on current revenue and fundraising success.

Candidate Profile

Tennyson is seeking an innovative leader who is a passionate advocate for Tennyson’s mission and will inspire others to support the organization’s impact. This individual has experience leading and directing complex organizations with diverse internal and external constituencies. S/He is a change agent, who is constantly scanning the operating environment to anticipate how the needs of Tennyson’s clients are changing. This individual has the capacity to implement effective organizational practices, while creating an agile institutional culture that can adapt to a changing strategic landscape.

Key skills and attributes include:

  • Leadership and Vision. Provides inspiration, leadership and support to the Board, staff, volunteers, donors, stakeholders and other constituents in accelerating progress on Tennyson’s This is a high profile, high energy position, requiring a dynamic individual who will motivate others to support Tennyson’s outcomes.
  • Relationships. Builds strong and sustainable relationships that translate into successful collaborations, impactful partnerships and fundraising results. Delivers excellence through personal accountability, motivation and engagement. Demonstrates political acumen and comfort with complexity and
  • Runs a fiscally sustainable organization, and coaches a strong management team that executes the strategic plan to grow the impact of the institution. Establishes metrics for operating results and financial performance as well as for achieving balanced growth across all of the organization’s components and functions. Is accountable for results and sets high ethical standards.
  • Philanthropy. Demonstrates personal success in achieving fundraising results and has built effective, durable relationships with funders and Takes responsibility for the development and implementation of plans and actions necessary to drive innovative and sustainable fundraising programs. Will drive an institutional culture of philanthropy, engaging the Board and staff in effective fundraising activities.
  • Governance. Understands nonprofit governance and has the skill to support the Board’s development as Tennyson’s strategic governing body. Experience framing issues for Board review, discussion, input and advocates for the Board’s development, evaluation and performance.
  • Communications. Media-experienced spokesperson who knows how to elev ate an institution’s mission, presence and brand locally, regionally, and nationally. Enjoys public speaking opportunities with the media, policymakers and a broad range of constituents.


This individual w ill have at least ten years of progressive leadership experience in nonprofit, corporate or government sectors. The successful candidate must be able to demonstrate the ability to operate effectively within a nonprofit governing environment.

This leader  understands  how  to  creatively  address  the   fast   changing   operating environment in which Tennyson operates. S/He has experience fostering change to ensure a nimble organizational culture. This individual is results oriented and will demonstrate success in operating a financially healthy and sustainable organization. This executive has experience building teams, structures and systems to support an impactful institution.

This individual has personally produced fundraising results and will build durable relationships with partners, donors, stakeholders and constituencies. Candidates must have knowledge and experience of nonprofit fundraising strategies and practices. This leader should demonstrate experience working inclusively with spiritual communities. Specific experience in social service or child welfare management is preferred but not required.

As the key spokesperson for Tennyson, this individual must have strong verbal and written communication skills. A bachelor’s degree from  an  accredited four-year  college  or university is expected. A degree at the graduate level is preferred.

To Apply

For nominations and expressions of interest, please contact Kittleman & Associates at (Insert application link). For more information, please contact:

Raylene Decatur, Principal Kittleman  & Associates

299 Milw aukee Street, Suite 327 Denver, Colorado 80206 USA rdecatur@kittleman.net